All posts by Bryan Hall

LED Sign from a distance

Readability of LED Road Signs

If you own an LED sign at some point you’ve probably wondered just how readable your sign may be. You have to consider text and image size, the amount of time each item is displayed, color scheme, viewer distance, time of day (or night), clouds, haze… There are so many things to consider that you may find yourself frustrated or even anxious, especially when you realize that you can’t be an objective observer because you already know what your sign displays.

LED Sign from a distance

Some things concerning the readability of your sign you just can’t control. Bad weather, construction zone signs, and even the power company’s utility vehicles can play havoc with viewing distance and line-of-sight. Location, while key for catching eyes, is a factor that has most likely been settled before you purchased your sign. However, overall readably with an LED sign from Lightking Outdoor is always in your control. All you need to do is use a color combination and font size that people can see from a number of distances regardless of the time of day.

Color Combinations

Readability is all about finding the right combinations of background and text colors to fit the environment. A recent study conducted in Sweden sought to figure out the effects of color combinations, font size, and lighting conditions had on a person’s ability to read LED signs at varying distances. What they learned should help to ease concerns you might have about your own choices.

For the study, researchers assembled 101 students of varying ages. They were asked to view signs a number of distances at different times of the day and night. These signs displayed a wide range of color combinations and font sizes. The researchers then conducted a statistical analysis based upon the students’ responses.

The study revealed that color combination greatly affects a sign’s readability. In fact, the most readable combinations where white text on a blue, brown, or green background. These combinations were much more visible at a distance than black text on a white or orange background.

Font Size

Since this study also used a number of font sizes with the color combinations. Researchers concluded that fonts of 300 mm (11.8 inches) could be read at longer distances during the day than at night. They also found that fonts of 200 mm (7.9 inches) had no significant change in readability between day and night.

EL3 350x768

Effective Use of LED Signs

EL3 350x768
An LED sign is one of the most powerful tools that you can use to promote your business. It gets out  your message in ways that a stationary display just can’t. Also, you will attract the eyes of potential customers from greater distances and, in turn, capture their interest for much longer than you will with static images. One of the concerns you may have before purchasing a sign or billboard from Lightking Outdoor is if you will be able to use it effectively. In this post, you will find information about how to use your sign as an effective communicator.

Targeted Content

The most important piece in any sign is the content. But it’s not only what you display; it’s how you display it, when you display it, and who you display it for. It may sound like a lot to put together, but it is actually pretty simple if you keep a few things in mind.

When creating your message, focus on messages that act as a call to action. Give people who view your sign a reason to come to become a customer. Sales and special deals are always an eye-catcher, as are phrases such as “limited time only.” You’ll be telling the public that if they don’t come now, they will be missing out.

You can take this one step further by adding content that is relevant to the time of day. Restaurant owners can advertise breakfast, lunch, and dinner items when they are being served. This marketing tactic can also be used for lightning sales, closing announcements, or anything else that you’d consider timely.

If your business or organization is geared toward public service, then you should consider adding content that is centered on community interest. Temperature and weather announcements are a tried and true method (banks have been doing that for generations), but you can do much more. A programmable LED sign can be used to give information from Amber alerts to traffic jams. These types of messages can work for any business because the public will begin to look at your sign as an unofficial landmark.

Always On

Having an “always on” policy ensures that people will see your message at all times, day or night. You may think that such a policy will raise your power bill (unfortunately, it will), but the benefits from broadcasting you message throughout the night, every night, will soon outweigh the cost. And by using this policy, you are bound to attract customers that would have no idea your services or products existed had they not seen the sign at 3 am.

Get Creative

With an LED sign, you have the tools to be as creative and experimental with your message as you’d like without affecting your bottom line. Try out new colors, fonts, and even the manner in which your messages appear on the sign. It won’t cost you anything. Just make sure that your message is readable at variety of distances, and that any special effects do not distract from what you want the public to know about your business.

billboard2

Maximizing Readability

An LED Billboard automatically raises the visibility of your business. It gets your message out, whether you’re indoors or outdoors. And if it is programmed for animation or text effects, people are more likely to remember your message.

One of the challenges that comes with an LED sign is communicating your message effectively. Location and size of your sign are key factors in drawing eyes, but you can have the best of both and still fail in messaging. Effective messages are readable messages because readable messages are the ones that are remembered. Here are few things to keep in mind when crafting your text.

Use All Caps

billboard2

You may hesitate to use caps because you think you will be perceived as shouting. Well, if you were texting, emailing, or making a Facebook post, all caps would be a bad idea. But when it comes to signage, all caps are a must.

Capital letters command attention. They are used in titles and headlines around the world, and they should also be used in your sign. They are also much easier to read than lowercase letters. Depending on the font you choose, many lowercase letters can be confused for others, such as the “i” and “l”. Remember, you want a message that can be read in an instant, but lingers in the memory.

Limit Abbreviations

Too many abbreviations or acronyms can quickly turn your message into alphabet soup. Consider the necessity of each one that you plan to use, as well as their alternative meanings. Furthermore, an abbreviation may often be misinterpreted by the reader, or even yourself. Whenever possible, leave the abbreviations to texting and social media, and let the military and government have their acronyms. Don’t force your potential customers to decode your sign. They just might decide to go somewhere else.

Proper Pacing

You may have plenty to say with your sign, but no one is going to know it if you don’t leave it up long enough for people to read it. After you draft your message, read it out loud. Take note of how long it takes. Then have at least two others do the same, average the time, and then add a second. If you have your message up for any less than this, you risk the possibility of the message flashing by before anyone can reading. After all, you know what the message says; they don’t.

Avoid Reverse Copy

In recent years, reverse copy has become a popular way to display text online. An example of reverse copy is using white text on a black background (the opposite, or reverse, of regular black on white). Another example would be lighting up all LEDs on a sign except the ones that would display the text. While this may be fashionable, it really isn’t an effective way to convey your message. The viewer is more focused on the colors of your background than the words you want read.

Say No to Script

The right font can make your sign stand out from the rest, but the wrong one can make it an incoherent mess. Take time to consider the readability of your chosen font from a number of distances. Also, make sure that your font sets the right tone. Comic book style letters are great for selling party supplies, but your message won’t be taken seriously if you’re selling insurance.

One of the biggest font mistakes is a script style. These may seem elegant or classy, but when it comes to signage, they are extremely difficult to read. The letters appear to run together, and they can be mistaken for others. It’s often impossible to tell a capital “F” and “T” apart, and many people won’t recognize a capital “Q.” There are many other readable fonts that can display your message in the tone you want.

Billboard Wholesaler

Choosing a Background Color for Your LED Billboard

Billboard WholesalerTo get the most out of your LED billboard, you need to choose a background color that captures the eye and quickly gets your message across. Background colors set the tone of your message and help to frame it into context. This post should shed some light on the basics of background colors.

Black

Black is one of the most important colors in design. It communicates power, formality, and sophistication to the viewer. It can also give off a sense of mystery.

A black background is perhaps the most useful method of catching the eye. Lettering and shapes stand out more prominently on black than they do with other colors. Black backgrounds display colored text better than any other. Whites and yellows stand out especially well. When choosing black for your background, make sure that your text is large enough so it is not overwhelmed by black’s power.

White

White is one of the most versatile color when choosing a background. In conveys concepts such as light, purity, and perfection. A white surface offers the ability to work with just about any other color, and makes text the most readable.

Although white offers the most uses when designing a memorable sign, there are a few things to keep in mind. White can appear to draw black letters into the background, making them blurry and difficult to read at varying distances. Blues, oranges, and reds are easier on the eye.

Red

Red is a color that plays on the emotions. It represents concepts such as fire, blood, strength, desire, and love. It’s no wonder why red is used for products like gasoline cans and to sell candy on Valentine’s Day.

Red backgrounds are most effective for warning signs. As such, red stands out in environments already saturated with color. Black, yellow, and white symbols or text on red backgrounds are visually striking, and demand attention. Choose red when your message is simple and doesn’t require translation into other languages.

Yellow

Yellow is a warm color. When you see lots of yellow, it’s not hard to think of sunshine, flowers, and things that make you feel comfortable.

Like red, yellow backgrounds have the capability of drawing attention in environments that are already full of bold and dominant colors. When used with black symbols or text, a yellow background helps to deliver a clear, understandable message. You can also create visually stimulating messages with reds, oranges, and greens.

Blue

It’s not hard to understand why blue is one of the world’s most popular colors. Not only is it the color of the sky and the sea, it stirs thoughts of concepts such as heaven, faith, confidence, and trust. Because of this, it is also perhaps the least confrontational color you can choose for an effective sign background.

Blue backgrounds offer a depth that other colors cannot match. That being said, to get the most out of a light blue background, choose black text and symbols; for dark blue backgrounds, choose white text and symbols.

home_box_1

Turn Advertising Expenses into an Investment with an LED Sign

badfishSure, LED signs and billboards aren’t free. In fact, just considering the expense can give you reservations about ever purchasing one. But the truth is, that expense isn’t an expense, it’s an investment. An LED sign is a critical part of a successful marketing strategy that will grow your business. Another critical part is messaging, but without making an investment in a sign, then your messaging will not be nearly effective.

LED signs are easily compared to HD TVs. A quality TV can easily put a dent in a family’s budget, but most families will look at it as an investment. This is because the TV will occupy one of the main gathering points in the home. It provides entertainment, information, and can help to foster a feeling of togetherness for the entire family. It isn’t long before the expense of the TV pays off.

To truly understand how the expense of a sign or billboard can quickly turn into one of the smartest investments you’ve ever made for your company is to know the benefits and how they overcome the costs.

Costs of LED Signs and Billboards

As with most major purchases, there will be a number of recurring costs with your sign. Once you understand what they are, you will be better prepared to incorporate them into your budget. Some of the recurring costs you can expect to pay include:

  • Installation
  • Labor
  • Maintenance
  • Design
  • Content writing
  • Power
  • Training

Additional costs can come from the location you wish to place your sign, to the amount of electrical work involved for connectivity, to insurance premiums. An LED sign may really seem like a financial burden, until you consider how these costs translate into benefits.

Realizing the Benefits

Before you decide that you can never recuperate the costs of a new sign, you should consider the benefits a sign will bring into your business or organization. Some of these benefits come immediately; others you will have to wait for. Planning and patience are required, but all your hard work and the money you put in will pay off.

Here is a list of the typical benefits you expect to receive after installing an LED sign:

  • Higher visibility
  • Brand recognition
  • Timely messaging
  • Higher property value
  • Business lead generation

A new sign always attracts attention. A sign that often displays new messages will continue to attract attention. The more attention you attract with your sign, the more likely you are to attract new customers. The costs of your sign will soon translate into long-term benefits.

Don’t just take our word for it. The Small Business Administration states that, “For businesses that choose to enhance their signage with an electronic message display, the owners typically see an increase in business of 15% to 150%.”

One other thing you should keep in mind: A LED sign is a permanent asset to your company. Once you’ve purchased it, it is a form of advertising that suddenly becomes cheap compared to other forms of advertising that you have to continue to pay for.

Making Public Service Announcements with Your LED Sign

photoThe main purpose for your LED sign is to attract attention for your business. You’ll spend time and energy making sure that exactly the right message that you want it to and that everyone who passes it will take a moment of their own time to read it. You’ll soon learn if your time and effort is paying off. Another way that you can attract attention with your sign is by using it to assist your community. Your business can use its sign to become an information resource for commuters. Especially of the public service announcement variety. With a programmable sign, you can instantly provide news and information that can have a positive impact on your community. Typical messages might include:

  • Weather alerts such as tornado and flash flood warnings
  • Amber Alerts
  • Road closings
  • Upcoming charity or community events
  • Sudden increases in fuel prices

A public service announcement is essentially any announcement that offers an informative message to the public. Your role as a sign owner isn’t to create content to display, but to display content that has already been created. An example of an effective public service announcement is a tornado warning. The National Weather Service issues an alert that is broadcast on local television and radio. This broadcast will interrupt regular programming, and is often followed by statements and further details by local meteorologists. This warning is only effective if people are watching or listening. Many people aren’t listening to radio in their cars, so they will most likely miss this emergency alert. You, as an LED billboard or sign owner, can aid the National Weather Service by relaying the warning to the passing public. This would cue the public to return home or pull over to find nearby shelter. You can add more value to this sort of announcement by including the address of the nearest qualified shelter. Posting Public Service Announcements are about being active in the community. And it also involves some responsibility. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you would like your business to take such a role.

Communicate with Local Government

This is the most important aspect of displaying public service announcements. In order to make sure that the information you display is accurate, be sure to contact local government officials. Road closings and other traffic alerts are easily verified with a phone call. And they should be glad to help you get the right information out there. Local government also appreciate your help with messages about civic events such as safety initiatives, election days, and crime prevention campaigns.

Support Non-Profits and Organizations

Non-profit groups are always on the lookout for ways to promote their initiatives. You can also help community organizations like Lion’s Club and Daughters of the American Revolution get the word out about upcoming events. A bright LED sign is a great way to inform, as well as remind, passers-by of blood drives and canned food collections.

Make Wise Choices

Not every message is a good message for your business. Some non-profits have political or religious leanings, and sometimes their messages can harm your business relationships. Before you post messages, make sure you understand the messages and how your customer base may view them. And it doesn’t hurt to do some research on the organization or their campaigns before agreeing to post their messages on your sign. Try to stay politically neutral, and if in doubt, it’s best not to take the risk of hurting your business.

10x36 LED Billboard in Panama City by Lightking Outdoor

Brighten Up Your Business with LED Displays

LED Billboard, 10x36 billboard, panama city billboardsErecting a sign or billboard for your business can be an expensive affair.  It can quickly become a net loss if you don’t choose the right one or place it in a location that no one will see. And let’s face it, if a sign or billboard doesn’t attract attention, then it’s pretty much useless.

LED signs and billboards are the type that attract attention. They are bold, brilliant, and shine bright at all hours of the night. And because they often display animated content, they are more memorable than a static sign that is lit internally by incandescent bulbs. This post should help to clear up some questions you may have about LEDs in general as well as give you some ideas on how to use them effectively to brighten up your business.

Light Emitting Diodes

When it comes down to it, an LED (short for Light Emitting Diode), is a tiny light bulb. Over the last few decades, the little red lights have been used for power indicators and warning signals in all sorts of electronic devices. Most of us haven’t given them a second thought because we’ve never had to hassle with swapping them out when changing batteries. They’ve just always seemed to work.

Nowadays, LEDs come in a variety of colors. When grouped together, they illuminate traffic lights, televisions, and even the gigantic screens on display in the world’s largest sporting arenas. The most common version of an LED grouping is called an RGB LED. An RBG LED consists of a group of three LEDS—red, blue, and green—and these can be programmed to display up to 16 million colors.

Besides the color capabilities, LEDs have significant advantages over incandescent lightbulbs. The list of benefits is rather long, but LED bulbs are known specifically for their durability. A typical LED bulb has a lifespan of 25,000 to 100,000 hours. Once the LEDs are in place, you can count on them to shine bright for years to come.

  • A lifespan of 25,000 to 100,000 hours. Once the LEDs are in place, you can count on them to shine bright for years to come.
  • Higher durability. They are made of plastic, so there is less chance of breakage.
  • Better efficiency. Since LEDs don’t have a filament, it requires less energy to light them; therefore your electric bills drop significantly.

Brightening Up Your Business

Incorporating an LED billboard or sign into your marketing campaign will do more than just attract attention, they are proven to increase business. LEDs grant higher visibility, especially at night. And because you aren’t stuck with still photographs and text, you will be able to deliver a complex message that will create new customers and generate name recognition.

When choosing a location for your sign, you should make sure to take into account a number of factors:

  • Size: The size of your sign should conform to the area in which it will be displayed. You should also take into account any zoning laws that restrict height, width, or placement.
  • Traffic: The more traffic that passes by your sign, the more likely your sign will attract a customer. Busy interstates and multi-lane highways are prime locations, but with programmable LEDs, you can also take advantage of stop lights by delivering several messages with one sign. You can also reach more people using indoor LED signs.
  • View: Consider the surroundings. Think about how likely it will be that your sign or billboard will be seen by passing traffic. Signs on hillsides, expressway exits, and the like can often be seen for miles. But you must also consider objects such as trees, hedges, other signs, or what else could obstruct view. Just think of the times that you have driven past an establishment because you couldn’t see the sign until it was too late to turn.
  • Content: Having the right content is as important as any other factor when choosing a sign. The overwhelming advantage that LEDs give over traditional signs is the ability to change your content any time you want. The ability to change content whenever necessary is especially important for businesses that routinely have scheduled events.